When it comes to what to make for their mum this Mother’s Day, siblings Bill and Izzy, from our story, are in total agreement: it has to be a cake. Maybe their baking skills don’t entirely match their enthusiasm, but they know she’ll love their showstopper – even if they had to cover up the wonky bits with buttercream.
- Preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C. Grease and line two 20cm sandwich tins.
- In a bowl, beat the butter, sugar, eggs, flour, vanilla and milk with an electric whisk for 2 minutes, until light and fluffy. Use 1 1/2 jars of mini jazzies to layer between the sponges: arrange a layer in the base of each tin. Spoon over some cake mix and top with jazzies. Spoon over the remaining cake mix and top with jazzies.
- Bake the sponges for 30 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool in the tins for 10 minutes; transfer to a rack to cool completely.
- While the cakes cool, make the buttercream. Beat the butter for 4-5 minutes, until very pale. Add the icing sugar, vanilla and 2 tbsp hot water and beat until light and fluffy.
- To assemble, spread the jam on top of one cooled sponge. Spread 150g (5 1/2oz) buttercream on the bottom of the other sponge and sandwich the two together. Set aside 75g (2 1/2oz) buttercream, then spread the rest over the top of the cake.
- Decorate by pressing the rest of the jazzies around the top of the cake and sprinkle over the hundreds and thousands.
- Colour the 75g buttercream with the gel. Transfer to a piping bag and snip a hole in the end. Pipe ‘Mum’ onto the cake.
When baking, use eggs at room temperature – they will disperse more evenly throughout the batter.
As well as being an ideal topping for toast, strawberry jam is great stirred into yogurt or – warmed with a little water in a pan – served with vanilla ice cream.
Freezing and defrosting guidelines
Freeze sponge only: bake according to the recipe but stop before adding decoration or icing. Allow to cool completely. Wrap well in clingfilm and tin foil (to prevent freezer burn) and freeze for up to 1 month.
Loosen the tin foil and clingfilm but leave to defrost in packaging at room temperature for several hours before serving. If you wish to add icing or decoration, add them after the baked goods have fully defrosted and are at room temperature.